Wednesday, July 28, 2010

Memory Lane - the kitchen

THIS

is the kitchen.

It's where we had birthday parties. Surrounding the table with our favorite meals and cake - and every other year, our friends.

It's where we did our homework - me, spread out across the whole table, my brother shooting me dirty looks from the little corner I left him.

It's where we did the dishes together every night, taking turns sweeping, clearing, and washing. Sometimes we grumbled and fought. Sometimes we ignored each other. Sometimes we laughed our heads off and got into towel fights. (My dad is REALLY good.)

It's where my parents finally had the genius idea to reoutfit my grandpa's old poker table and turn it into a kitchen table big enough to fit all seven of us (with one extra seat!) that would also fit in the kitchen.

It's where everything got dumped at the end of the day, and my mom would get really mad at the state of slob-ness upon which our entire family had descended and from which there was no recovery.

It's where we had family get-togethers. Countless troops of aunts, uncles, grandparents, cousins, step-aunts and step-uncles, ex-step-aunts and ex-step-uncles. All having a marvelous time eating shrimp cocktail, spinach dip, olives and barbecue ribs.

It's where my mother would wait for me at the end of the day - after theater or yearbook or someimportantclubmeeting - and listen to who said what and why.

It's where we gathered for Sunday morning breakfasts - after my dad's clarion call of "Good morning, Jackson family! Time for breakfast!" - and the MoTab playing in the background. Waffles with peanut butter, syrup, walnuts, bananas, chocolate chips and a fruit salad to boot. Or maybe scrambled eggs with cheese, lemon poppyseed muffins, bacon and orange juice so pulpy you had to strain it with your teeth. Whatever he made, it was consumed with gusto.

It's where we played games. Card games. Lots of card games. Scum and Uno and Hand and Foot and Kings Corner and Rummy and Phase 10 and Skip-Bo and who knows what else. If there were more than four of us home, and the Tigers weren't playing, we got our card game on.

It's where we said hello and goodbye, coming and going from the garage. It's where we welcomed missionaries and sent them off.

It's where love seems most concentrated.

9 comments:

InkMom said...

Would you like to come play Hand and Foot with my mom and my sister and me? We could use a fourth. I think you would fit just fine.

MommyJ said...

Oh yes, do come. We'd have a wonderful time. The kitchen holds the most memories for me when I think of the house where I grew up. It's where all the best talking happened.

Kimberly said...

Not only does this post make me nostalgic (as all your posts lately have), but it makes me smile about the kitchen I have now, and how we're shaping memories around it...

Marcia said...

How on earth did you all fit around that table??

Jocelyn Christensen said...

Phase 10 rules. I miss our tiny kitchen...and it WAS tiny...unimaginably small. But so was the whole house. My parents called it the little house that could.

Melanie J said...

Wait, I want to join in the Hand and Foot game, too.

Amy said...

My most memorable Jackson kitchen moment was when Harmony and I showed up at your back glass door one evening. We knocked and you stuck out your head and exclaimed "We're eating dinner!" I don't know why Harmony and I thought it was hilarious (it was dinner time after all), but to this day that's my strongest memory of your kitchen!

Kazzy said...

Kitchen tables are like altars. Or should be. Knowing your fam is struggling a bit makes these posts so melancholy...

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